1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Irish
  4. >
  5. "Who are the workers?"

"Who are the workers?"

Translation:Cé hiad na hoibrithe?

February 25, 2015

7 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/charwood17

Can someone explain the use of the word hiad in this sentence? I'm thinking it has something to do with a lenition of "iad" - am I on the right track?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/galaxyrocker

So, basically, there's three things going on here.

1) and other questions involve a hidden copula 2) With the copula, a definite noun can't exist without the corresponding object pronoun. In this case, iad, since it's na hoibrithe (plural). 3) when beside a pronoun beginning with a vowel (é, í, iad) causes it to take an "h". This is not considered lenition, however.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/charwood17

Thank you, that is incredibly helpful! As a matter of fact, you are very often incredibly helpful on these discussion threads, so thank you for everything!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JamesTWils

So, this subject pronoun seems always to go at the end of the sentence, but here after the interrogative pronoun. Is there any way to tell where the pronouns are meant to go?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jimd_92

Why does the word 'oibrithe' have a h attached?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sliotar.

na ends in a vowel, so nouns that start with a vowel get a h-prefix after na.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mikeinkerry

Very helpful. Could one take "Cé" as "Who are" since the copula is hidden? If so, is the "Who" part of "Cé" not itself something that has the form of an interrogative-pronoun-subject? In theory, might that satisfy the need for the corresponding pronoun without the additional "hiad"? (as in English). I guess not, for the English literal translation would be "Who are they the workers." Forgive my ignorance of Irish grammar. Perhaps this is one of those very "nice" differences.

Learn Irish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.